I started exercising again.
My neighbors unknowingly inspired me into it as I’ve watched them set up home gyms and have boot camp-like sessions in their garages.
Some of them are adults with children, so if they can carve out time to improve their health, I can, too.
I work out in the comfort of my living room, though. I don’t want anyone to see me struggle through burpees, squats and push-ups on my knees.
I’m embarrassed enough just imagining how I look during the workouts.
The benefits of daily exercise is not lost on me, so workout routines have been a recurring cycle for me since my teen years.
I get inspired, start working out, question my sanity and stop.
Months, even a year will go by, and I start up again.
A few years ago, after joining a local gym, I worked out in a blouse. My cousin (who encouraged me to join and was waiting for me to arrive) was both highly amused and embarrassed.
I figured if the woman on the elliptical next to me could work out in full make-up and jewelry, I could work out in a blouse.
Plus, I knew something no one else knew: Chances were I wasn’t going to keep up this effort forever, and I was not wasting my funds on trendy athletic attire that was going to end up folded beneath my pajama pants.
I quit going to the gym after my membership expired and I never renewed it. I still get those we-miss-you-come-back emails from the facility.
I’ve marked them as SPAM. I. Am. Not. Returning. Guys.
I realized gyms aren’t for me, so instead, I invested in a collection of home workout videos.
Let me tell you about these workouts: They are nothing like my mom’s VHS copy Jane Fonda’s Workout from the 80s that I used back in the day.
I foolishly decided that I was going to jump head-first into HIIT (High-intensity interval training) workouts.
The workouts are only 30 minutes long, and as a working parent, I considered that to be a reasonable amount of time to devote to exercising at the end of the day.
I could workout before making dinner.
When the first video began I thought: Today will be the first day of the rest of my life.
As it turns out, that day was the first day of my body feeling like a wad of crumpled paper that had been thrown across the room and into a trashcan. A trashcan that was on fire.
I didn’t make the planned dinner that night.
My kids ate sandwiches, my husband had leftovers and I reclined on the couch weakly eating grapes like I was a hospital patient.
I was positive my legs had been replaced with noodles, and by the next morning, I was walking like the Tin Man.
But I’m giving it an honest go (again) guys, even if I do spend most of my time breathlessly arguing with the instructor on the video.
I repeatedly tell her she’s insane and what I’m not going to do.
There are eight workout videos in this collection, and I’m supposed to repeat them once I reach the last video.
I plan on completing each workout, but at the end of this round — if I survive — I just might be searching for a VHS player and looking through my mom’s garage for Jane Fonda instead.
Reach Marquita Griffin at email@example.com.